William G. Everson

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William G. Everson
Everson wg.jpg
General Everson as National Guard Bureau Chief
Born (1879-07-01)July 1, 1879
Wooster, Ohio
Died September 13, 1954(1954-09-13) (aged 75)
Portland, Oregon
Buried at Riverview Abbey, Portland Oregon
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch United States Army seal United States Army
Years of service 1898-1945
Rank US-O8 insignia.svg Major General
Unit Indiana Army National Guard
National Guard Bureau
Commands held 332nd Infantry Regiment
76th Infantry Brigade
Indiana Army National Guard
Chief of the National Guard Bureau
Battles/wars Spanish-American War
World War I
Other work Baptist clergyman
Public speaker
College president

William G. Everson (July 1, 1879 – September 13, 1954) was a Major General in the United States Army who served as Chief of the National Guard Bureau.

Early life[edit]

William Graham Everson was born in Wooster, Ohio on July 1, 1879. He was raised in Indiana, and joined the Army for the Spanish-American War, enlisting in Company E, 158th Indiana Infantry, and rising through the ranks to First Sergeant.[1][2]

Subsequent career[edit]

Everson received his ordination as a Baptist minister in 1901, and was the pastor of churches in Boston, Indianapolis, Louisville, Cincinnati and Muncie. He also became a well known public speaker as a lecturer on the Chautauqua Circuit.[3]

In 1903 Everson graduated from Franklin College, and in 1905 he was commissioned in the Indiana National Guard as a First Lieutenant in the Chaplain Corps.[4][5] In 1908 Everson graduated from Newton Theological Seminary.[6][7] He was promoted to Captain in the 3rd Indiana Infantry in 1909, Major in 1914 and Lieutenant Colonel in 1918.[8]

World War I[edit]

Everson was promoted to Colonel and commander of the 332nd Infantry Regiment, a unit of the 83rd Infantry Division.[9] The 332nd served in Italy, and were the only American troops to serve east of the Adriatic Sea, carrying out operations in Austria, Dalmatia, Serbia, and Montenegro.[10]

The awards and decorations Everson received for his World War I service included: War Merit Cross (Italy); Italian Sanctus Georgius (Saint George), Silver (for valor); Fatiche di Guerra (Italy) (for soldiers who served in the war zone for one year or more); Duca D'Aosta Medal (Italy) (for soldiers who served in or with the Italian Third Army); and the Star and Crown of Fiume (for defense of the Free State of Fiume).[11]

Post World War I[edit]

Everson continued his military service after the war. In 1922 he was promoted to Brigadier General as commander of the 76th Infantry Brigade.[12] Everson subsequently served as Adjutant General of Indiana.[13]

He graduated from the United States Army War College in 1923 and the United States Army Command and General Staff College in 1928.[14]

National Guard Bureau[edit]

In 1929 Everson was promoted to Major General and appointed as Chief of the Militia Bureau.[15] He served in this position until 1931, when he resigned in order to return to the ministry, accepting a position with the First Baptist Church in Denver.[16]

Later career[edit]

In 1931 Everson received an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Franklin College.[17] From 1939 to 1943 he served as President of Linfield College.[18] Everson continued to serve in the military until reaching mandatory retirement age in 1945.[19]

Retirement and death[edit]

In retirement Everson resided in Portland, Oregon, where he died on September 13, 1954. He is buried at Riverview Abbey in Portland.[20]


  1. ^ United Spanish War Veterans, Department of Indiana, General Orders, 1937
  2. ^ Hyacinthe Ringrose, The International Blue Book, 1926, page 130
  3. ^ Frank D. Haimbaugh, History of Delaware County, Biography, William G. Everson, 1924
  4. ^ International Herald Tribune, The Front Page, 1887-1992, 1992, page 62
  5. ^ Oregon Guardsman, The New Chief, November 15, 1929, page 1
  6. ^ Newton Theological Institution, Bulletin - The Newton Theological Institution, Volumes 1-2, 1906, page 13
  7. ^ Andover Newton Theological School, Annual Catalog, 1912, page 262
  8. ^ U.S. Army Adjutant General, Recruiting News, The Chief of the Militia Bureau, February 1, 1931
  9. ^ Matthew J. Seelinger, Army Historical Foundation, “Viva l’America!” The 332d Infantry on the Italian Front, 2013
  10. ^ Joseph L. Lettau, In Italy with the 332nd Infantry, 1921, page 62
  11. ^ Levere, William C. (1928). The History of Sigma Alpha Epsilon in the World War. Menasha, Wisconsin: The Collegiate Press: George Banta Publishing Co. p. 152. 
  12. ^ Army-Navy Publications, Pictorial History Thirty-Eighth Division, 1941, page 137
  13. ^ O. K. Quivey, Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity, The Record, Fighting Parson Made Prexy, Volume 58, Issue 4, 1938, page 384
  14. ^ Oregon Guardsman, The New Chief, November 15, 1929, page 1
  15. ^ Chicago Tribune, New Militia Bureau Chief Here, February 9, 1930
  16. ^ Ralph Albert Parlette, The Lyceum Magazine, Volume 41, 1931, page 11
  17. ^ Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Pan-Pacific Who's Who, 1941, page 209
  18. ^ Christian Century Company, The Christian Century, Volume 60, 1943, page 305
  19. ^ William R. Denslow, 10,000 Famous Freemasons, Part One (A-J), 2004, page 30
  20. ^ Thomas E. Spencer, Where They’re Buried, 2009, page 543

External references[edit]

William Graham Everson at Find A Grave

Military offices
Preceded by
Ernest R. Redmond (acting)
Chief of the National Guard Bureau
1929 –- 1931
Succeeded by
George E. Leach